Academic & College Policies

Academic Policies

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

As members of an academic community engaged in the pursuit of truth and with a special concern for values, students must conform to a high standard of honesty and integrity in their academic work. Instances where academic misconduct occur include, but are not limited to, falsification or misrepresentation of material used in the admission process, presenting the work of others as one's own, theft, plagiarism and cheating. These actions pose a threat to the academic integrity of the University and its mission and will be treated accordingly. Academic misconduct is subject to disciplinary sanctions. These sanctions include, but are not limited to, reprimand, probation, suspension and dismissal. Students are required to familiarize themselves with the specific protocols of this college. Click here for the CLAE Plagiarism and Academic Integrity policy.

Academic Standards

A student should regularly monitor their student records in the Self-Service portion in My Portal. The academic deans monitor the records of students enrolled to assure that reasonable progress is being made toward the students’ educational objectives. Student records are reviewed at the end of each semester. Based upon this review and regardless of formal notice, the Dean may place the student on the Dean’s List (for excellence), note that the student is in good standing, place the student on academic probation, give him/her an academic warning or dismiss the student from the college/school for poor scholarship. Academic standings are noted on the students’ official academic records and in the Self-Service portion in My Portal.

Academic Warning
Undergraduate students will be warned whenever the semester GPA falls below 2.00. Graduate students will be warned whenever the semester GPA falls below 3.00. Such warning enables students to take early corrective action concerning their academic performance.

Academic Probation
Students are placed on academic probation when it appears that their performance places their academic objectives in jeopardy. Undergraduate students will be automatically placed on academic probation when the cumulative GPA falls below 2.00. Graduate students will be automatically placed on academic probation when the cumulative GPA falls below 3.00. Individual programs may establish additional criteria for placing a student on probation. An undergraduate student who fails to raise the cumulative average to at least 2.00 or a graduate student who fails to raise the cumulative average to a 3.00, or satisfy the additional program/school criteria in the following term is subject to academic dismissal for poor scholarship.

When a student has been placed on academic probation, the Dean may, at his/her discretion, establish specific requirements or conditions that the student must meet. The dean may require the student to enroll in particular courses, repeat courses, establish minimum or maximum number of credit hours to be attempted or earned, require a specific minimum GPA for the next term, require the student to consult a counselor or tutor, or engage in supervised study, etc. Failure to meet such conditions, when established, may lead to academic dismissal.

Academic Dismissal
Students may be dismissed from the college and university as a result of poor academic performance. Students are automatically subject to dismissal the second consecutive term the cumulative average falls below 2.00 for undergraduate students and below 3.00 for graduate students. Dismissal may occur when an undergraduate student has not achieved a 2.00 cumulative quality point average or a graduate student has not achieved a 3.00 cumulative quality point average in the term following one in which he/she was placed on probation, when terms or conditions established for probation have not been met, or when the academic record reflects poor performance.

Students who wish to appeal an academic dismissal should contact the dean’s office immediately upon their receipt of notice that they have been dismissed. If first contact is made by telephone or in person, it should be immediately followed by a written statement of their intent to appeal the dismissal.

Accelerated 5-Year Programs

Students who are enrolled in accelerated 5-year bachelor/master's programs can take up to 4 graduate level courses (up to 12 credits total with a maximum of 6 credits in one term and 6 in the second term) while an undergraduate student when approved by the director of the graduate program and the dean’s office as part of the 5-year curriculum plan for their degrees. In order to complete both the Bachelor and Master degrees in five years, the student must maintain an undergraduate GPA of 3.25 at University of Detroit Mercy and be maintain full-time enrollment in each semester of the five years (10 consecutive semesters). See program details for additional requirements.


The academic advisor plays an important role in guiding and supporting their advisees towards successfully achieving their academic goals. Students deciding on a departmental major are ordinarily assigned a faculty advisor by the department. For most programs, students must consult with and obtain the approval of an academic advisor in the development of their schedules for each term and when changing registration (adding or dropping) after the first week of classes. Students can also consult their advisor for clarification of academic policies and procedures and when contemplating changes in their major program or curriculum.

Students can determine who has been assigned as their advisor by reviewing the Student Record section in My Portal. Students should meet with their advisor at least once per term, prior to registering for classes. It is recommended that students prepare for their advising appointment by reflecting on their academic and career goals. Students should also review their progress towards degree completion by running their Degree Evaluation in My Portal. Students can also review degree requirements in the University catalog. Students should review the class schedule to plan a draft schedule for the upcoming semester to review with their advisor.

Advisors, counselors, faculty and administrative staff may assist students by explaining requirements and procedures in individual instances. However, students are responsible and accountable for knowledge of the requirements, procedures and regulations set forth in the catalog.

Application for Graduation

An “Application for Graduation” should be filed early in the academic year in which the student intends to graduate. Candidates for degrees must complete their application in the Self-Service portion in My Portal. Application deadlines are set by the University. Be sure to follow all necessary steps and additional deadlines outlined by the Registrar such as RSVPs, caps and gowns, etc. Applications received after the deadline or failure to RSVP by the deadline may result in denial to participate in the commencement ceremony and/or delay in the date of graduation.


The Commencement ceremony occurs once a year in May. Students must apply for graduation to be considered eligible for commencement. Students who have completed their degree requirements at any point in the preceding academic year are invited to participate. June and August graduates may be permitted to participate in the May commencement exercises with permission of dean’s office as long as they are enrolled in all of the courses to complete their degree by August. Participation in commencement will be denied to students who have more than 12 credit hours remaining. For undergraduate students, the remaining credit hours cannot include the Math requirement or ENL 1310 Academic Writing (or its equivalent). Applications received after the deadline or failure to RSVP by the deadline may result in denial to participate in the commencement ceremony. Commencement is ceremonial; participation in commencement exercises does not assure that all requirements have been met or that a degree has been or will be granted.

Directed Studies

A directed study is intended to provide a student the opportunity to conduct an in-depth examination of a topic that is not typically offered in a traditional course. A directed study is not intended to duplicate or act as a substitute for a required course. A directed study course should demand a substantial project which is equivalent to an upper division course in the department. The details of the work must be specified in a directed studies contract. There are several limitations and requirements for directed studies courses. For further information, timeline, and requirements, undergraduate students click here for the Directed Studies policy; graduate students please contact your advisor or the Dean’s office.

Grade Grievances

In some instances a student may believe that the final grade received in a particular course is unjustified. In such cases the student may choose to appeal the grade received. Each college or school has published written grievance procedures which must be followed. In general, students are advised to consult with the instructor concerned prior to beginning the appeals process.

The process includes moving the grievance through various stages including through the instructor, chairperson, a College committee composed of faculty and students, and then the Dean. The decision of the Dean is final. All grade appeals must be finalized before a degree can be conferred. Appeals to the Vice President for Academic Affairs will be considered only on procedural grounds.

All appeals should be filed in a timely manner, within 30 days after the final grade is issued.  Click here for a copy the Academic Policy, Procedure and Petition.

Transfer Credits

In addition to the transfer credit rules established by the University, the College of Liberal Arts & Education limits the number of transfer credits counted in the major to half of the total required credits in the major. For example, if the major requires 30 credits, half of them (15) may be transfer credits. This limitation does not apply to required supportive courses.

Undergraduate Senior Privilege

University of Detroit Mercy undergraduate seniors with at least a 3.25 GPA or who have been accepted to a University of Detroit Mercy Master's program may be permitted to take a limited number (9 credits) of graduate (5000-level or above) courses to be used toward a graduate degree. Such courses cannot be counted for credit towards their undergraduate degree and would appear only on a graduate transcript. The student must have earned senior status at least 95 hours and obtain the approval of the instructor, director of the graduate program offering the courses to be taken as well as signatures of their advisor and dean's office. See the full university policy for further details and requirements.

Thesis Requirements - Plan A

Master’s candidates in programs requiring a thesis and candidates in other programs who elect to write a thesis, as well as all doctoral candidates, must present a thesis or dissertation approved by their advisor and program director on some phase of their field of specialization. The thesis or dissertation must be written and typed according to the prescribed format, available in each college Dean’s Office, and be in accord with the other regulations of the University.

The thesis or dissertation topic must be filed with the dean no later than the date determined by the specific program.

All research that involves human subjects must be submitted to the Institutional Review Board before research can begin. Information about regulations governing research involving human subjects may be obtained from the Office of Academic Affairs, Room 500, Fisher Administrative Center.

The thesis or dissertation must be completed, in accordance with all regulations, not later than two years after course requirements have been fulfilled. Master’s theses must be filed in duplicate and dissertations in triplicate with the McNichols Library, Technical Services not later than the date determined by the specific program. Note that some programs require shorter time limits.

Non-Thesis Master’s Program - Plan B

Several departments offer degree candidates an option to receive a master’s degree without requiring a thesis. See individual department listings for details. In all circumstances, the Plan B papers must be filed with the department and college within one year after course requirements have been fulfilled.

Capstone Projects

Several departments offer degree candidates a capstone project as an option to receive a master’s degree without requiring a thesis. See individual department listings for details. In all circumstances, the capstone projects must be filed with the department and college within one year after the capstone course was completed.

Time Limits

The maximum time permitted for completion of a graduate degree is seven years from the time of admission. Some colleges may impose more restrictive time limitations than seven years. Students who need an extension may apply to the dean of the appropriate college before the seven-year limit has ended.

Comprehensive Examination

The nature of the comprehensive examination is determined by each department where such examination is required. A candidate who fails the required comprehensive examination may repeat it once only at the next date determined by the college/school. Failure to pass the repeat comprehensive examination will result in the student’s termination from the academic program.